Kicking data analysis into high gear with Red Bull

  • Infiniti Red Bull Racing team looks to AT&T to fine-tune communications.
  • Collaboration tools keep drivers on track, calculating and communicating winning strategies.

For the winners of the last four FIA Formula One Drivers and Constructors’ World Championship® titles, the 2014 season was always going to be more intense than ever. Infiniti Red Bull Racing, like its competitors, had to entirely redesign its cars to accommodate the most fundamental F1 regulation changes in a decade. Restrictions on track time for testing and the size of the on-site technical crew are also still in effect, meaning the team must to do more with less throughout the year.

The plan: intense pre-season innovation and ongoing evolution at a blistering pace.

To execute this strategy, the already highly connected team would need to rapidly analyze even greater volumes of data and collaborate even more effectively between regularly changing locations in real-time. Put simply, Infiniti Red Bull Racing needed a way to rev up the speed and power of its communications.

As a technical supplier to Infiniti Red Bull Racing since 2012 and an innovation partner in 2014, AT&T stepped up to help Infiniti Red Bull Racing get even more from its communications infrastructure in 2014. Using the highly secure AT&T high-speed global network, the team can now transfer high-quality data between its headquarters in the UK, its engine manufacturer, Renault, in France, and its trackside team, at speeds up to two and half times faster than was possible last year. Better network performance and stability means the team can gather more data from the 100 sensors on the Infiniti Red Bull car and analyze it collaboratively. Shared data monitoring and simulations that test the car in a virtual environment are complemented by HD videoconferencing for face-to-face discussions.

The result is that team cars are fixed and fine-tuned more quickly and efficiently than ever.

Communications across the continents

The truly global nature of F1 makes sophisticated communications even more challenging. F1 Grand Prix races are being held in 19 countries on five continents this year. The important work of optimizing the cars will continue to the season’s close in Abu Dhabi, with AT&T providing connectivity right to the pits at each race circuit. This helps ensure that the Infiniti Red Bull Racing team needs only to plug in when it sets up at the track to be totally connected.

Come September 21, the team will have modified the car to suit the Singapore Street Circuit with constant monitoring and fine-tuning by the global HQ and track-side teams during the race. This technically challenging track, which includes multiple fast and slow turns, will be even more difficult under lights as this is a night race. Traffic will be heavy on the network as the team keeps track of all the racers and calculates winning strategies.

By this time, Infiniti Red Bull Racing will have also further fine-tuned its communications network. All of its WAN links will have been consolidated onto AT&T’s backbone to make its communication and collaboration tools easily accessible on a range of devices via AT&T.

Whether Infiniti Red Bull Racing can add to its trophy cabinet or not, I’ll be watching this race with even greater appreciation, knowing how much of the winning is done behind the scenes.

Bernard Yee Regional President - Asia Pacific AT&T Global Service About Bernard